tv American History TV CSPAN November 2, 2014 2:12pm-2:23pm EST
in fact, pike's peak is mountain -- it is the way we think of it. pike's peak inspired the poem became "america the came here to who teach in 1893. during her stay, she took a wagon ride south of the and the view down to of the nes from the top mountain inspired the poetry, that inspired -- tthe images that are captured in that of the united states. peak not nk of pikes only symbolizing this one the tion, but in many ways, beauty of it, it's majesty, symbolizes the entire country.
>> all weekend long, "american history tv" is featuring colorado springs colorado. dry, and mild climate made it popular as a health resort, especially for people suffering from tuberculosis. our comcast cable staff rs, our c-span visited many sites learning about colorado springs history. ♪ >> palmer saw possibilities and it was the hink mountains that he fell in love with. where colorado springs is nestled, right up against pike's peak.
what he saw as our greatest economic driver was the climate the fact ountains and that -- people like him felt -- from the east coast would be drawn here to live for a few weeks or a few months. they would be drawn by the the ful climate and stunning, natural beauty. so he saw in this place potential. he built colorado springs along the rail lines, and in the rail lines connected further south, and he built this town, in to be his home and he always saw it as an anecdote, if you will, to eastern industrialization. this young man, who grew up in the second largest city in the looked to ntry, he the west and we have this vast open expanse of land -- seemingly limitless -- and he envisioned a place here where people could come and live or enjoy the healthy
climate, enjoy the adjacent mountains, and experience a kind of vigorous lifestyle that he, himself, enjoyed. william jackson palmer was born in delaware. at the age of five, he and his philadelphia to where his parents were originally from. he natalie came from a quaker he came from a certain quaker family. his belief certainly saved his actions -- shaped his actions. the as working for pennsylvania railroad when the civil war broke out. he was a quaker, he actually not only enlisted, but he formed a troop. of his religious beliefs, but actually because of them. he later had to account for his
in the civil war and he quaker community of friends that if the same circumstances presented themselves again as they did in the summer of 1861, he would do the exact same thing. letter that he e addressed -- the letter that he his community of friends in which he is asked to account for his actions in the civil war. and he does not regret it. -- he takes uote this as his mantra, if you will, and he believes that he did the right thing and he does not question his judgment. in 1894, palmer's men nominated the medal of honor, which was awarded to him for his actions at redhill, alabama. it is among the treasures in our current palmer exhibit. men of his generation following the civil war, palmer turned his eyes west for his
future. he had very little money. he did not come from wealth. he had a decent education, but had a fantastic reputation. and so he went to work for the kansas and pacific railway. he was secretary treasurer. later, he left the confines of the office, he wanted to be out he took over , so the eys and took over cruise that brought the kansas in the pacific all the way to denver in 1870. he -- he didn't have money or a lot of but he had connections and to use those connections to launches great stream. and that was -- as everyone was railroad east to
west, those transcontinental railroad expanded out west at a rapid pace -- palmer had a unique vision. he wanted to build a north and line, leaving from denver, coming down the spine front range of colorado, connecting in the footsteps of the santa fe trail, and building a railway all the way the heart of mexico. connecting both these two countries, market, and people. and along the way, his dream cities along up the line to drive up trade and traffic along the railway. he also wanted to build what was called the baby railroad. a narrow gauge railroad instead of standard gauge. but to save money -- perhaps it might be more efficient to climb the steep grade of the colorado mountains. his railway, founded in 1870, is a narrow gauge -- 3 foot wide gauge.
he started in denver and he was building self. of his l occupy the rest professional life was that he turned his railway west and he headed up to the rich mining up in south park and eventually extended that real line all the way to sonic city, rich copper o the mines -- to salt lake city, connecting to the rich copper mines. idealist mer was an and a visionary, she needed the acumen of george peabody, who is a remarkable man in american history. he was a partner in the firm of spencer trapping company. of y helped develop some america's leading industry. what george foster peabody brought to the partnership was the ability to find investors finance the railroad --
to finance palmer stream. it was with the denver and rio to nde western that they had retool from standard is too narrow gauge. palmer family became a millionaire in 1901. up until that time, he had been struggling financially. after the rio grande, palmer build his dream home. always wanted d to build in this beautiful canyon northwest of colorado springs and he finally have the financial prowess to do it. in 1905, the house was remodeled and that was when the stone was brought in, beautiful roof tiles, and the castle was created. today, it still stands. piece a really beautiful of our history and we're all proud that it has been preserved.
another thing that i think is really interesting and has left a lasting impact on account is of open space parks. during his lifetime and shortly after, he donated over 200,000 acres of land to colorado springs for parkland. some of it was developed, some of it was left open, but he believed that people needed a outside of the house and outside of their work enjoy what ends to the best of colorado had to offer. park, monument valley park, cheyenne park -- all of were gifted by palmer and we're still known today as a city of parks. saw opportunity where others saw him probability. for instance, other people interested in creating colonies west -- farming colonies
or colonies built on health and recreation by colorado springs -- bypass the area. this thought is a desolate area with very few resources. where others turned away and said they were never be a town place, he also -- when he died in 1909, he was no founder of a colorado springs, but one of the greatest economic boosters of the state of colorado. he was a very well-respected businessman. he died in 1909. credit for given opening up southern colorado to economic development. the railroad came through, then mineral extraction was possible. and so was lumbering. and so a city building. so he opened up the entire to trade and commerce and he was seen as one of the most important people who ever lived in the state.